USAREUR Driver's License

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So apparently some states in Germany have decided that their country's SOFA with the U.S. doesn't apply to them regarding USAREUR personnel and their USAREUR driver's licenses, specifically the part about having an expired stateside DL in conjunction with a USAREUR DL as still being valid to drive within Germany.

 

 

Patton said the new position of German authorities contradicted a previous commitment from 1993 confirming that an expired U.S. license combined with a valid USAREUR license would be considered “a valid basis” to drive a USAREUR-plated car under the SOFA supplementary agreement.

 

“It is a basic principle of public international law that provisions of an international agreement ... take precedence over the provisions of the domestic law of a country that is a party to the agreement when the two are in conflict,” Patton said. “Questions of international law are not decided unilaterally by one party to an international agreement but through consultation between the parties.”

So if your stateside license is expired you may, or mmay not, get your car impounded if you're stopped by the polizei.

 

Read more here

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I remember when I arrived in Germany years ago, I was told the USAREUR license was not valid without an ID card or valid U.S. driver's license. I didn't put much thought to it since I had a valid U.S. driver's license, but remember the clerk making a big deal about it. However, on the back of my U.S. Forces Certificate of License it clearly states "The license and a valid ID card must be in your possession when operating a Privately Owned Vehicle (POV)." It doesn't say anything about any other license.

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The JAG office is working with the German government on this issue. Until it is resolved, though, whether we like it or not, make sure your stateside DL is current if you are going to be operating a POV off post.

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Whats the situation with your license when you go back to the states?

 

Are you still permitted to drive with an expired license?

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woo-hoo!

 

You're still expired in the states, but at least you can have someone drive you to a DMV/DOL and renew in person (as I did last year). Some states - looking at you Oregon - really make it a pain in the arse for its citizens temporarily living out of state.

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“It is a basic principle of public international law that provisions of an international agreement ... take precedence over the provisions of the domestic law of a country that is a party to the agreement when the two are in conflict,” Patton said."

 

Unfortunately for the efficacy of Mr. Patton's argument, there is one country that not only does not recognize this "basic principle", it practically invented the term "treaty override" to describe the process by which later domestic legislation is permitted to cancel preexisting treaty obligations.

 

That country?

 

The USA.

 

The Germans are just learning from their master.

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Much ado about nothing. Germany has reversed their standing and will allow expired stateside licenses as long as your USAREUR or USAFE license is valid.

 

http://www.stripes.com/news/europe/germany-will-again-recognize-expired-us-state-driver-s-licenses-1.331763

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